DeKalb County schools wait for SACS report - CBS46 News

DeKalb County schools wait for SACS report

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DEKALB COUNTY, GA (CBS46) -

A team from the DeKalb County School District's accrediting agency wrapped up a final two-day visit and will issue its report on whether the district will get off probation in late January.

"A lot was riding on this particular visit, to say the least, but we were ready," Superintendent Michael Thurmond told CBS Atlanta News.

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) put the district on probation after finding numerous problems. SACS cited infighting among school board members, a lack of leadership and a massive budget gap.

The governor removed six school board members and replaced them earlier this year.

"Now when you go to board meetings, people are respectful, they're smart," said Allison Gevertz, the head of a parent group. "They ask good questions. Their questions tend to focus on what's best for the entire county."

Thurmond agreed the new board is united and functions well together.

"There was distrust and discord and morale was at an all time low and as I look around the district today, I see a dramatic change," said Thurmond.

The superintendent also noted that the district has erased a $14.7 million deficit and now has a $25 million surplus.

"I think we were able to demonstrate to SACS that we have been good stewards of the taxpayers' dollars and that we're moving in the right direction," said Thurmond.

Many parents said there is a new spirit of cooperation in the district.

"The atmosphere is definitely much calmer and there have been lots of positives over the last 10 months," said Gevertz.

SACS is expected to issue its report on whether to restore full accreditation to the district in late January.

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